Issa informed new lawmakers that Congress has only once, in 2001, successfully repealed a rule by way of a resolution under the Congressional Review Act.
“All this legislation does is allow for us to dispose of one or more regulations in an expedited fashion in this body and have it seen in the same form in the Senate,” he said. “It doesn’t change the underlying law.”
He explained that the House, the Senate and the president all have to agree on the resolution to repeal a rule.
“Only one regulation has ever been repealed,” he said. “It’s been 16 years and the few that will likely be considered under this act and underlying law will be just that, a relatively few regulations that are believed to be unnecessary on which the House, Senate and president concur.”
But Democrats argued that the bill would allow Congress to erase months of President Obama’s regulatory agenda.
Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) accused Republicans of bringing a bill to gut regulations a day after trying to gut the Office of Congressional Ethics.
“They like the idea of the fox guarding the hen house. They want to put themselves in control of the hen house, so what do they do today come back not with a jobs bill, but a regulations bill, something that protects the health safety and welfare of Americans, little ones, elderly, workers and people who are consumers,” he said.
“They will tell you that gutting regulations helps to enhance job creation, but nothing can be further from the truth when you consider the last eight years.”
Johnson noted that 15 million jobs were created under President Obama despite the regulatory regimes established under the Affordable Care Act and the Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform law.
“This is an attempt to bring the standard of living Americans have come to enjoy to a halt,” he said.
The House rejected a motion from Rep. Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) to send the bill back to committee.